With a feature set like that on the flier, I had to check out the place. It was on Howard Street between 6th and 7th, an easy walk from the CalTrain Station. This was vastly improved access over the previous one, which had required me to walk up to Mission Street and take a bus to the 16th Street BART Station. When I got there I found it was a spacious place, and every room had people mixing in it. A nice home for the Party, and probably quite a step up from the old one. One nice change was that the street outside didn't smell like a restroom that had never been cleaned, an unfortunate comment on where the old one was.
Matt Gonzalez was the keynote speaker in the rather brief spoken section of the meeting. He talked about what a nice place it looked like, and said he would be around for a couple of hours if people wanted to talk to him individually. A while later I went and hung around the guy for a while. Everybody that came up to him was thoroughly frosted about some issue of City business. From just that it was easy to see his job is very demanding. I finally got a chance to get a word in edgewise so I told him I am working on making life into a video game that you win by finding happiness in your own back yard. He said he liked that idea, so I gave him a MEND YOUR FUELISH WAYS sticker and let it go. If he was anybody else, I wouldn't have parted with it without getting a buck. I did it because I think you are supposed to give politicians things other people have to pay for, especially when they are important people in an important city.
I remember when Audie Bock was an elected Green in the State Assembly. During the entire time she was our incumbent, she never attended a Green Party meeting. Matt Gonzalez has gone a long way towards taking the sting out of that memory. As the most visible member of the Green Party of California, and the second most powerful politician in San Francisco, he is showing us that incumbents can work with people that want to see a better kind of politics.
Susan King was the MC and head organizer for the party. She introduced a string of other people who made brief comments. Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures of most of them. Later in the evening I found out that she had wanted me to take a picture of the huge carrot cake with Green Party OFFICE Version 2.0 on it, but at the time I must have been doing something much more important in some other room, so I missed the opportunity. I had a piece of the cake though, and it was yummy.
Susan explained that Matt (the guy in the gray shirt over a black T shirt) was the one that organized the bike convoy to brink all the furniture from the old office to the new office by pedal power. Matt said that it had been five bikes with trailers, "and hadn't taken that long."
After the speaking part of the meeting the DJ (I think he was the guy shown with Matt) spun tunes for the rest of the evening while we all mixed. He had a great T shirt on, and I wish I had taken a picture of it. The graphic featured two gear wheels, one labeled Democrat and the other labeled Republican, and a wrench labeled Green Party flying in from stage left. It made me proud of the company I keep. My only regret of the evening was that I hadn't taken my Eco-Nation CD up to turn them on to the last cut. It features Nandor Tanczos, one of the Green MPs in New Zealand, rapping over a music track he would have felt very comfortable with. I just didn't realize until I got there that the sound was right up his alley.
Lucy (left picture) and Don (right picture) are some of those people that I have seen at so many Green Party meetings I had to include them.
Woody, Marla, and June. I know that June works with Medea at Global Exchange, and I think the others do to but I'm not sure. Anyhow, they (or at least June) are usually around when Medea is in the vicinity.
This guy was the bartender. People kept him busy all evening long. He had such delicacies as hemp based beer and Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, along with a nice selection of other things. The snacks were also good, making the evening a comfortable experience.
When I gave my little speech to the bartender and the guy that was hanging out with him, the bartender's friend gave me a buck and told me to install his sticker on the office somewhere. Because of his generosity, there is the germ of a nice sticker collection on that office now.
That yellow and blue button that Mark Stout is wearing says he wants Tom Amiano to be Mayor of San Francisco. There were a lot of people with those buttons at the event, so I assume that's who we are talking about for next falls election. During her talk, Susan had mentioned that Tom Amiano had phoned in his regrets that he couldn't be there and sent a potted plant to help with the decorating.
Medea's outfit went well with her CODE PINK button. When I talked to her she gave me an update about her campaign to make Ford build more fuel efficient cars. Steve Hill, whom she was talking to when this picture was taken, told me he is looking forward to speaking in Mountain View on Tuesday (6/17/03).
My best trade of the evening was a small pile of MEND YOUR FUELISH WAYS stickers for this license. The couple I got it from explained they had picked it up at a Critical Mass ride. They implied that could be a limited edition, because the guy behind the thing is not making any money off of the project. I'll be putting it on my bicycle real soon now.